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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34908
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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I am the non resident parent of a 17 year old child who stayed

Customer Question

I am the non resident parent of a 17 year old child who stayed on to full-time 6th form education from September 2013 to October 11th 2013. The child(or should we say young adult?) left 6th form and worked 23 hours per week from 21st October 2013 with a retail company sometimes up to 36 hours per week. Education was continued via 2 A-levels on a correspondence basis, the fees being paid for by the child's mother. My query is why am I still paying CSA after informing them of the change in circumstances in October 2013. They say it's a matter for Child Benefits and they are powerless to stop taking money off me. The child benefits people will not discuss the matter with me because the matter is for my ex-wife to discuss. It seems to me impossible to get a straight answer from any agency as to why I'm still paying CSA.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
When did you notify the HMRC about the Child Benefit situation in writing?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

This was carried out in October 13th-20th 2014 then spoke to them several times over October, November and December as was the case with the CSA. Both organisations seem unwilling to take my word for anything.

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Did you report is as Benefit Fraud (which is what it is)
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Yes, I did this over the phone on 2 occasions because that is what CSA advised my to do because they have continued to take maintenance payments off me for over the last three months. The child benefit office will never advise me on what progress has been made because apparently it is none of my business even though I'm being relieved of about £300 per month.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Yes this was carried out in November and again in December 2013 although, am not allowed to be given feedback from Child benefit office for progress.

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
I do have to say that the Child. Benefit investigators are the slowest I have ever come across so the delay is not unusual. ( I appreciate that this is of no comfort but it may make it feel less personal)
The answer as to why you are still paying is pure incompetence.
Until the Child benefit stops then you are liable for Child maintenance so far as the CSA are concerned.
However if you are certain of your facts you can raise a formal complaint against the CSA - after all it is not an acceptable excuse for them to break their own rules.
If you could get written evidence of what your child is doing the that would be wise.
The make a formal complaint in writing and ask for are- assessment based on the evidence that you have.
Point out that if ( when) it transpires that the payments were not due you will expect the CSA to repay you and recover the money from your ex as and when they can
Please ask if you need further details